The League of Arab States was established on 22nd March when leaders of Arab States signed a formal declaration entitled the “Charter of the League of Arab States,” marking the foundation of the regional organization.
We are commemorating the 65th anniversary of the League of Arab States, which comprises of 22 Arab states, with its Head Quarters in Cairo, and more than four decades of its Mission in India.
The Arab League adopted in Beirut Summit in 2002, the Arab Peace Initiative, which includes complete withdrawal from the Arab occupied territories since 1967 and to achieve Palestinian legitimate rights to normalize relations with Israel. Arab consensus is still maintained on the Arab Peace Initiative and support for the international efforts for the two-state solution, and achieving of just and lasting peace to end the Arab-Israeli conflict, based on international resolutions and agreed references for peace process.
The Arab Peace Initiative Ministerial Committee, in the meeting held on 10th March 2010, welcomed the stands taken by the U.S. Vice President, Secretary General of the United Nations, the Spanish Presidency of the European Union and Senior Representative for European Diplomacy, in addition to French, Norwegian and Danish statements, as well as from several organizations and countries that condemned the new Israeli settlements emphasizing the necessity to have simultaneously, clear and specific procedures, to deal with the existing dangerous situation after the announcement of the Israeli government about the settlements, which have been going on in the Palestinian territories, including in the occupied East Jerusalem. Joint coordinated urgent action is needed to stop all actions taking place in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Historical ties between Arab nations and India can be traced down to the pre-history era. Leaders and people from both sides are keen to further cement Arab-India ties and open new avenues of cooperation in keeping with the present needs and demands of the future.
The League of Arab States has been taking major steps towards increasing and strengthening political, social, cultural, economic ties between India and the Arab world which was culminated in the establishment of the Arab-India Cooperation Forum in ecember 2008 and under which was the successful holding of the India-Arab Investment Conclave in February 2010.
The League of Arab States Council Ministerial meeting, vide its Resolution dated 3rd March 2010, mandated the General Secretariat of the League of Arab States to continue its efforts in coordination with respective Arab and Indian bodies to implement the result of this Conclave. The League of Arab States Mission is hopeful that efforts will be continued to implement decisions reached at the Conclave. The League of Arab States Mission appreciates FICCI for the organization of the Conclave and its outcome the Delhi Declaration released on 9th February, 2010 which describes the Conclave as “a step towards sustainable partnership,” between members of the League of Arab States and India.
The current trade between India and the Arab world, which stands at US$ 114 billion, is expected to double to US$ 230 billion by 2014 as was mentioned by the Honorable Minister of Commerce & Industry, Mr. Anand Sharma at the India-Arab Investment Projects Conclave. This positive projection is welcomed by the Arab delegates.
During the two days of the Conclave, investment projects worth US$ 32 billion were discussed in different economic sectors.
The Conclave also witnessed signing of the MoU between FICCI and Federation of Palestinian Chambers of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture.
The success of the Conclave has further opened several investment opportunities for the trade to grow between India and the Arab world.
The Arab world is an important source of energy for India as almost 70% of India’s energy requirements are sourced from the region. No doubt, that nearly 5 million Indians who live in the Arab world, mainly the Gulf region, have contributed significantly to the development of the countries in the region as well as to India.
Within the framework of Arab-India Cooperation Forum, in coordination with members of the Arab League States of the Arab Summit Troika and the Indian External Affairs Ministry, the first session of Joint High Level Committee meeting is expected to be held in near future.
The League of Arab States member countries are considering the possibility of hosting the 2nd Arab-Indian cultural week. It is expected to be held in one of the Arab countries, in coordination with the respective Arab and Indian authorities as the first one was held in New Delhi in December 2008.
As a strong manifestation of relations between India and the Arab world,India has been attending the annual Arab League summits on regular basis.
The invitation is extended to the Government of India for the forthcoming Summit to be held on 27th of March 2010 in Libya.
The two sides exert all efforts to consider more options of further developing Arab-India relations in different areas including political, social, cultural and economic fields.
There is a need for collective and dedicated efforts for strengthening the Indo-Arab ties with further building up of relations between India and the Arab world including in the field of Science and Technology, Education, Health, Telecommunication and Energy.
The League of Arab States expresses its gratitude to the Indian Government for hosting the second India-Arab Investment Conclave on 8-9 February, 2010 in Delhi, within the framework of Arab-Indian Cooperation Forum.
The League of Arab States Mission is thankful to the Government of India for its principle position in support of the Palestinian cause. The Arab countries also appreciate India voting in favour of the Report of the Human Rights Council on its Twelfth Special Session held in last October in Geneva on the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Gaza Strip.
The stand expressed by India in Riyadh Declaration, signed on 28th February 2010, during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, supporting the formation of Palestinian State,